View Post

Photoshop 101 – Part 1 – Understanding Layers

In Learning Center, Post-Processing, Tutorials by jfischerLeave a Comment

Making the jump from Lightroom to Photoshop can be an intimidating proposition.  Much like that first time you switched the camera from Auto all the way to that frightening ‘M’, suddenly you had more tools to work with than you knew what to do with.  No longer was the camera handling everything and making the majority of the decisions for you; now you had to know the correlation between Shutter Speed, Aperture and ISO to make the image you wanted. While Lightroom isn’t exactly the ‘Auto’ of Post Processing workflows, …

View Post

Ultimate Southwest Workshop – with Mark Metternich

In General, Travel, Trip Reports by jfischer1 Comment

After shooting for a number of years, and traveling to many corners of the globe, there was one region of the United States that I had largely not yet explored – the great American Southwest. It was a vast and varied landscape that both held untold numbers of amazing views, but also endless expanses to cross to find just the right spots to shoot. Knowing that I wanted to explore and experience the southwest at its best, I chose to put my trust in letting another photographer lead the way …

View Post

Show and Tell: Possum Kingdom Invasion

In Learning Center, Show and Tell by jfischerLeave a Comment

“If there’s one thing I know, it’s never to mess with mother nature, mother in-laws and, mother freaking Ukrainians.” – Skinny Pete Storm Chasing – it has become extremely popular in recent years, however it’s also very dangerous, not only to you, but others on the roads as well. Mother Nature is not to be taken lightly when she’s full of anger and fury. For this single reason, I choose not to chase on my own, but instead have formed friendships with a couple of experienced chasers whom I trust. …

View Post

Show and Tell – Artists Palette, Death Valley

In Learning Center, Show and Tell by jfischerLeave a Comment

The for my first major trip of 2018, I set my sights on Death Valley National Park. One of the few places with a good chance of being ‘camping weather’ at the end of February, and a location I had wanted to shoot for some time. Clear skies during the day and partially cloudy skies at night frustrated me much of the time. While the weather wasn’t as cooperative as one might hope, I can’t complain too much either as I think the warmest we ever saw was in the …

View Post

The PNW Chronicles: The Mountains

In Gallery Collection, General, PNW, Travel by jfischer1 Comment

For a Texas born and raised photographer, I consider the Pacific Northwest my second home.  I traveled west most of my young life, most of my relatives lived in California or Oregon, so every year we almost always boarded the first flight headed that direction after the end of the school year.  And while I’ve visited Southern California enough for all the Hollywood glamour to more than fade from my eyes, the Pacific Northwest has done more than an equal amount to capture my soul.  From the coasts to lush …

View Post

Death Valley National Park – February 2018

In Travel, Trip Reports by jfischerLeave a Comment

For my first major trip of 2018 I set my slights on a location I had not visited since I was a kid in the back seat during a family vacation – Death Valley. I distinctly remember driving through Death Valley during some family vacation, it was late enough that the rental Town Car had an outside temperature gauge which was of course an interesting stat for a dash through the valley in what was most likely June, but I’m also fairly certain we didn’t stop to experience the valley …

View Post

Landscapes 201 – The Magic Hours

In Landscapes, Learning Center by jfischer1 Comment

“Noon” – a four letter word to a landscape photographer. There is nothing more important to the quality of our landscape images than the quality of light entering the front element of the lens and ultimately onto the sensor or film. There are two distinct times of day when the light of the world is at its best; sunrise and sunset. These two times are known as the Magic Hours and each is split into two halves. The Blue Hour and the Golden Hour. Blue Hour occurs in the period …

View Post

Landscapes 301 – Long Exposures

In Landscapes, Learning Center, Tutorials by jfischerLeave a Comment

Photographs have the ability to not only show the world as it is, but also how we perceive it, and with the right tools, far beyond how the human eye can interpret it.  In some ways the camera is inferior to the human eye (which in the wide natural world is far from being all that impressive), but in other ways the camera can be manipulated to capture views of the world that the human eye never could.  Examples range from capturing the Milky Way in all of its detail, …

View Post

Dodge/Burn with Photoshop Blend Modes

In Learning Center, Post-Processing, Tips and tricks, Tutorials by jfischer1 Comment

When most photographers think of Dodging and Burning they immediately think of portrait retouching. Adjusting the contouring of the face and other body features to sculpt the lights and shadows. However, the technique can be used on almost any photo where objects need to take on an increased depth through the addition of contrast. While global and even localized contrast can be used to bring punch and detail, it can not reshape or refocus the light like a little bit of dodging and burning can do. Regardless if it’s a …

View Post

Landscapes 201 – Adjust and Adapt

In Landscapes, Learning Center, Tutorials by jfischerLeave a Comment

You’ve planned your photography trip for weeks, maybe even months, you’ve picked the best time of year for the location, or the skies, or the tides, or whatever it is you want to capture at some far away location.  Taking time away from most likely both work and family, you have a list of ‘must have’ photos in your mind of what you want to shoot when you get there for the trip to be a success.  There is, however, one thing you can’t control, one variable that will, almost …

View Post

Show and Tell: Ketetahi Falls

In Learning Center, Show and Tell by jfischerLeave a Comment

Tongariro National Park, home to the major volcanoes of New Zealand’s North Island. And where there are mountains, there will be streams of water flowing down from the high elevations, and where there is flowing water, with a little luck there will be a waterfall or two. Ketetahi Falls is one of the smallest named falls within the National Park, but that makes it no less picturesque and worth a visit. Located at the end of the popular Alpine Crossing hiking trail, most hikers pass it right by in the …

View Post

Astrophotography Lenses – Beyond the f-number

In Astrophotography, Learning Center, Tips and tricks by jfischer3 Comments

Just getting started in Astrophotography?  Please check out my introductory article, ‘Astrophography – Seeing the Light in the Darkest Places’ first before you dive in here.  It’s been recently updated for 2017! Astrophotography is a wonderful, and at the moment wildly popular, style of photography. From the peace that comes from sitting in the still darkness taking in the sights of the night sky, to the wonder of seeing far more than the eye can behold light up the back side of your camera’s screen after each click – there …